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Speech by Ambassador to the Czech Republic H.E. Ma Keqing at the 21st International Conference THE KEY FACTORS OF SUCCESS

2016-12-01 17:08

Ladies and Gentlemen,

I am delighted to have the opportunity to address so distinguished audience. I’d like to talk about the success of my country -- China.

The most remarkable achievement in China is that over the past three decades, when China embarked on reform and opening-up, we have registered a high-speed economic growth and succeeded in turning China into the world’s second biggest economy, the biggest trader of goods and the second largest direct overseas investor. Now China’s economy accounts for 13% of the world’s total, and contributes around 30% to the growth of world economy. Thanks to the reform and opening-up endeavor, China has lifted over 700 million people out of poverty, which accounted for over 70% of the global population living in poverty. We have significantly made life better for our 1.3 billion people and accomplished just in a few decades what has taken other countries several hundred years to achieve.

Reasons behind the success are multifold. First, the deeply-rooted Chinese culture and its unique value system, which includes among others, the sense of propriety, justice, integrity and honor, and the belief that man should be in harmony with nature, follow nature’s course and unremittingly pursue self-renewal. These values carry a profound impact on Chinese outlook of the world and instilled a strong sense of national confidence and a national spirit in the Chinese people.

Second, we believe that every country should have the right to choose a development path suited to its own conditions. Modernizing a big country with a population of more than 1.3 billion is an endeavor never undertaken in the history of mankind. This means China must pursue its own path of development. We have found such a path, that is, socialism with distinct Chinese features, and achieved success along this path. We hope that as China deepens its engagement with the world, more countries and people will come to understand and respect the development path that China has chosen.

Third, China’s independent foreign policy of peace has ensured a relatively stable and favorable external environment for China’s development. We are committed to peaceful development and treat all countries, big or small, rich or poor, equally. We adhere to win-win strategy and ready to share our development opportunities with the rest of the world, so that we can all develop together.

Last but not least, we have relied on reform and opening-up for our past success and they have become China’s basic policy. It is true that, against the background of the sluggish global economy and deep-seated domestic problems accumulated over the years, the growth of Chinese economy has slowed down. The Chinese economy is at a crucial stage of transition from old to new growth drivers and a stage of economic transformation and upgrading. For the sake of the long-term interests and sustainable development, we took a hard decision to press ahead with structural reform. The goal is to take an energy conserving, environment friendly, green, circular and sustainable path of development.

While we have already made visible progress, we are also aware that downward economic pressure remains and the challenges are not to be underestimated. In the stage of transition, short-term fluctuations of economic growth are hardly avoidable. However, the Chinese economy has huge potential, strong advantage, broad space and bright prospect, and will not head for a "hard landing".

Three years ago, Chinese President Xi Jinping proposed the “Belt and Road” Initiative, with the aim to share development opportunities and achieve common prosperity with relevant countries. Since then, more than 100 countries and international organizations have joined the Initiative. China has signed cooperation agreements in advancing the “Belt and Road” Initiative with more than 30 countries, including the Czech Republic, and cooperated with 20 plus countries in production capacities. China welcomes all countries including the Czech Republic, to board the “express train” of China’s development and enjoy prosperity together.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

2016 is a year of historic significance for China-Czech relations. The visit by President Xi Jinping in March, the ever first head of State visit from China to the Czech Republic, has crowned our bilateral relationship to the strategic height. Currently, the all-round cooperation is unfolded in various fields and yielded some landmark results. Three direct flights from Beijing, Shanghai and Chengdu respectively to Prague have greatly facilitated trade, economic activities and people-to-people exchange between us. Rapidly increasing Chinese tourists have contributed to the flourishing of the Czech tourism industry and its related sectors. With pleasure and satisfaction, we have witnessed the growing interests of companies from both countries to accelerate mutual investments. Already China is the most important foreign market for SKODA with a share of 28%, and the Chinese customers make 41% share out of the total number for Home Credit. Chinese investments in the Czech Republic have accumulated to more than 2 billion USD. Cooperation between our two countries and their companies has proved to be mutually beneficial. It is our hope that with our joint efforts, this win-win cooperation will deliver even more fruits to our two countries and peoples.

Thank you!

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